Sunday, 28 February, 2021

'It is wrong': Jacinda Ardern slams Australia in furious speech

Jacinda Ardern Jacinda Ardern Getty Images
Ginger Lawrence | 16 February, 2021, 10:08

She added that the children had been born into a conflict zone "through no fault of their own" and that going to New Zealand would not be in their best interests.

Jacinda Ardern said the woman was an Australia-New Zealand dual national, but that Australia's Government recently stripped her of citizenship under national security laws.

New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has accused Australia of "abdicating its responsibilities" amid a row over a woman accused of having links to the Islamic State (IS).

"We believe Australia has abdicated its responsibilities in relation to this person and I have personally made that point to Prime Minister Morrison".

Turkish authorities said on Monday that three New Zealanders, including a woman alleged to be a member of Islamic State, have been caught trying to enter Turkey illegally from Syria.

She has asked officials to ensure there is a welfare check on the children.

It's not the first time New Zealand has strongly taken up the issue.

He says we should just leave it to Turkish justice system to deal with her. Which also makes her a New Zealand citizen by birth. "They did not act in good faith".

'New Zealand, frankly, is exhausted of having Australia export its problems, ' she said.

"The problem is more complicated because New Zealand is a very hard county to get into full stop right now, so trying to argue that anyone should be advanced through that waiting list is a no gamer".

Morrison then told Australian media that he had a call scheduled with Ardern about the woman's case - but he defended Australia's actions.

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A German Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said "these statements are really disconcerting and incomprehensible". Many protesters were fined or given jail sentences ranging from seven to 15 days.

Ms Begum has launched an appeal to have her citizenship restored.

Mr Morrison, speaking at a press conference in Canberra shortly after Ardern's remarks, said the pair would discuss the issue in a phone call in the coming hours.

"It's my job as the Australian prime minister to put Australia's national security interests first", he said.

Legislation in Australia automatically cancels a dual-citizen's citizenship when they engage in terrorism, he said.

"Australia's interest here is that we do not want to see terrorists who fought with terrorism organisations enjoying privileges of citizenship", he said.

"We have continually raised with Australia our view that the decision was wrong", she said.

"The Australian behaviour is despicable on a couple of fronts, not the least of which is the diplomatic front with regards to us".

"Any fair minded person would consider this person an Australian, and that is my view too", Ardern said.

"We will put our hands up when we need to own a situation - we would expect the same from Australia. But now there are two children involved so we have to resolve this issue with those two children in mind".

When asked this morning if New Zealand should block the person's return, National leader Judith Collins said that "most New Zealanders like me, would consider such a person not someone we would go out of our way to assist back to New Zealand. other than meeting the obligations the Government has to".